Day Two Notes from Google Midwest Summit 2012

Day two from the Google Midwest Summit.  No snow in the forecast today - it's sunny, blue skies and a crisp 42 degrees in the Dells.  Day one was a great experience both as a presenter and a learner.  I'm eager for another day of learning, and I'll be touching base with a few attendees from yesterday's session on Google Sites. Read on for more notes, links, and goodies picked up from day two.

Source Links/Session Pages:
Steven Butschi, Shared Notes
Minnetonka - Google and iPads
Chad Kafka - Google Hangouts

Google+ is coming soon to K-12, possibly for Staff first for professional development, PLC work, shared department initiatives.

"The Web is what you make of it." Google Chrome's current motto applying to education: the base platform for technology - the browser. It's not about tying to one device - web is unifying link (less licensing, specific apps)

Check out Google Apps EDU App Packs for bulk discounts on popular paid apps including Teacher Dashboard which we use at ETHS.

Making Google Docs Offline is tough - think about what it takes to make real time collaboration online work when offline. Spreadsheets are particularly challenging because many calculations are done in the cloud and need to be done locally.

iPad 1:1 in Minnetonka: iPads for all freshmen and sophomores (science, math, english during first year, control group = students w/out iPads).  Using Google Forms, Schoology for formative assessments and access results/grades in real time.

Workflow: Schoology has a dropbox feature (connected from Google Docs) for getting work from students to teachers. Remarks app links to Google Drive. This is very nice since we have Google Drive folders already created for our teachers. (Link to comparison for annotation apps).  We use Notability and they have just added Google Drive support, so I need to test this when I return. Schoology demo - looking pretty nice for 1:1, especially if it plays well on the iPad.

Using Quickoffice Pro HD instead of Google Drive because they wanted offline editing capabilities.

Google Drive app vs. Safari experience - additional editing capabilities but messing with tables and images can be a bit tricky.  Stay with Safari for editing Google Docs and collaboration.

Schoology also has a plugin/connection with

Hangouts have started to be allowed in K-12 Apps accounts, but it's only the "Lite" version, 1-to-1 video only, no extra features (so far).  Lite is in the URL.

Users can start hangouts directly from Gmail. No longer need to go through Google+ anymore.  Uses include professional development - screenshare, text chat, show Google Drive files, teaching from home, podcasts

Gmail Labs - right side chat is great for moving your chat bar to the right side which allows for more room.

Hangout Tips - stop other apps that may be running in the background.  Add as a Chrome for quick launching from a new tab, Google Hangouts toolbox - adjust volume of other people, additional apps available

Live hangout features - screenshare, live edit of Google Docs, effects, multiple screen shares

Honestly, I became a bit overwhelmed with how much can be done with all of these tools.  This is a good thing, but just as I recall from my experience at the Google Teachers Academy (way back in 2009), I need to take a deep breath, let the head come to rest from all of that spinning, and go back to work with some goals of implementing these ideas into the classroom. Get ready ETHS - here we go!

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